National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), has called on parents and religious leaders to join hands in tackling drug abuse in the country.

Chairman of the Agency, Brig- Gen Buba Marwa made the call at the 18th annual unity Ramadan lecture in Abuja.

The NDLEA boss, who decried the rising spate of drug abuse in the country, said all hands must be on deck to arrest the ugly trend.

“I want to emphasise that the society must be involved in the fight against drug abuse.

“Yes,  the NDLEA has the mandate to check drug abuse but it must start with proper parenting by the family, parents should take more interests in their children and the type of company they keep.

“Religious organisations, schools and traditional institutions also have a great role to play for us to win this war,” he said.

He said about 15 million Nigerians were  currently into drug abuse and this trend must be checked or else the figure would rise to 35 million Nigerians by 2050.

Marwa explained that the increase in crime and criminality such as kidnapping and banditry could be traced to the  use of drugs.

He, however, assured the public that NDLEA would continue to deploy more proactive measures to prevent, arrest and rehabilitate drug users in the country.

Earlier, Prof. Usman Bugaje, an Islamic scholar, in his lecture with the theme “Legacy of Islam” called on Muslims to use the Ramadan period to get closer to Allah through supplication and good deeds.

NAN